One day this fall, my sister-in-law visited me. We were exploring the Santa Cruz mountains when we stumbled on the Bigfoot Museum, a little two-room tourist attraction in downtown Boulder Creek. We were being regaled by the proprietor with his tales of encounters with Bigfoot. I noticed this book on his shelf and asked him about it. "Oh, that's the Bigfoot 'Bible,'" he said, "Sanderson started it all." The Bigfoot Bible! I knew at that moment that I had to add it to this site.
Sanderson, (b. January 30, 1911, d. Feb. 19, 1973) was a naturalist and science writer. He wrote a number of lively books about his adventures searching for rare and 'exotic' species in Africa and the Caribbean. Born in Scotland, Sanderson later became a US citizen. He was schooled at Eton and Cambridge, with degrees in zoology, botany and geology, so he was hardly an outsider to the field. He admired the works of Charles Fort and coined the word cryptozoology in the early 1940s to describe the study of unknown animals. Sanderson could be skeptical, though, as befits a Fortean. His speculations on unknown primates were informed by critical thinking and his years of observation of animals in the wild.
This book was originally published in hardback in 1961 by Chilton, (better known for their automobile technical manuals). The Chilton edition has xv+505 pages, and lacks an index. Abominable Snowmen was reprinted in heavily abridged form in paperback by Pyramid Books in 1968, as 'Abominable Snowmen, Legend Come to Life,' and the subtitle 'An Account of Reports on the Existence of Ultra-Primitive Hominids on Five Contients,' in all 365 pages, including an index. This etext was based on the extended Chilton version, for copyright reasons.